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It is hard to affirm what the cost of a silver coin is today. Silver dollars were first issued in the United States of America in 1794. Nevertheless, not all coins are of high value though they have a long history. The US mint used to issue a large number of silver money. But nowadays it is only a thing of the past, since it was removed from circulation a long period of time ago & is issued mainly for numismatists.

Possessors of silver dollars are very interested in the value of their collections. The older – the more expensive. The age of a silver coin is thought to be one of the principal criteria that impacts upon its value. The US mint is thought to have produced only 2000 coins of the 1794 silver money and Flowing Hair Liberty silver dollars. So, they are viewed to be of high value. The silver dollars coined a year later, for instance, can be found much easier &, as a result, are of lower value. The older silver dollars would be more expensive, but for their quite poor condition. The rarer – the better. Another criterion that effects the price of a coin is how rare it is.
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Healthcare Pennies

Whatever your thoughts are about the new reformation process in health care that is currently getting a ton of hype and coverage and hot air… here’s a pretty simple breakdown of the expected cost and sourcing – using your ordinary penny. It helps when you put it all to scale…  Warning: Penny Mutilation!

U.S. Dollar ( $ )
As it turns out, the symbol ($) comes from Spain. The II upon the S represented the Pillars of Hercules, upon which rests the Spanish coat of arms. The S came about from the plural for Dollars or Pesos. In Spanish 1 Dolar, 2 Dolares, 1 Peso, 2 Pesos etc. hence the S. To identify the United States dollar from all other dollars the S was superimposed with a U. Hence a US Dollar. In time, people not understanding the origin and / or due to unclear hand writing, the U was replaced with II. More time elapsed and to speed up the writing process, the II became a single I as in $. Now that the $ is built into virtually all computers, the evolution will probably stop. Although the typography style associated with “$” is a whole other issue all together… and don’t even start on the develpoment of the Euro symbol.

As for how the US came about acquiring the denomination, the Spanish Embassy in Washington said that when the War of Independence began, they soon realised how they needed to mint money which would be recognised as legal tender by the US’ allies. France was approached and asked for permission to base the US currency on the French ‘Livres’. France said no. Then the US’ other ally, Spain, was approached. The Spanish Cortes (Parliament) decided they would allow the US to base their national currency on the Spanish Silver Dollar (Dolar de Plata), already in circulation in many Southern States. However, it appears that the Spanish term ‘Dolar’ was derived from the word ‘dollar’. So the word itself comes from somewhere else.

The origin of the word ‘dollar’ is often attributed to the Bohemian ‘taler’ (short for joachimstaler from Sankt Joachimsthal where talers were first made). The Spanish Silver Dollar (‘piece of eight’) was patterned after the taler. So I guess we owe Spain and Bohemia our monetary units.

The Euro – €

The euro is the name given to the proposed single currency of the European Union. According to the European Commission the euro exists as a currency initially started in January 1999 and gradually moved into general use, with the introduction of coins and notes in 2002.

According to the information posted on the official Euro Web site, about thirty draft designs were drawn up internally by the European Commission. Of these members of the general public assessed ten, narrowing the shortlist to two designs. Jacques Santer, president of the European Commission, and Yves-Thibault de Silguy, the European commissioner in charge of the euro chose the final design.

The euro symbol as it appears in Courier New, Times New Roman and Arial. Microsoft and other vendors chose to make instances of the euro symbol font and style specific – so the design of the symbol takes on the characteristics of the font in which it resides ( € )

Traditionally numerals and currency symbols are the same width for any given font. This helps values line up properly in tabular applications like spreadsheets. To make the euro symbol the correct width for Arial and Times New Roman it had to be condensed.

If you have anything to add, or which can define this more closely, feel free to comment below…

Coin Shrinking from Jeremy Ruhland on Vimeo.

Check out Bert Hickman’s “Makin’ Small Change” and Shrinker Gallery

Discharging about 10 kV (15,000 joules!) from enormous 300 µF capacitors the team at Hackerbot Labs “Turn half dollars into quarters! Turn quarters into dimes! Turn dimes into little semi-molten balls of metal!” with their custom built apparatus through a process known as “Magnaforming”.  We would love to get a hold of some of these but can’t really make them in bulk… SO you can head over there to purchase “small” change

Interesting (personal+anecdotal)  article about the value of an investment in American Eagle Silver Proof Dollars.  It may or may not work out in the end unless you have a complete set or if you are looking to trade in buillion market values buying in on the lows and hoarding until you can make a standard market profit. Here’s to all things shiny none-the-less…

Can investing and collecting go hand-in-hand? Yes — especially if you are collecting coins, stock certificates, bank notes, or other rare items of value. Larry Schutts, an expert in investment-related collectibles, will periodically review items of interest from his collection and answer your questions here.

Every December, I send each of my brothers a package of Christmas gifts for the family. The boxes contain the usual assortment of presents one sends to sisters-in-law, nephews and nieces, but my brothers always get the new American Eagle Silver Proof dollar. The U.S. Mint has issued the coins every year since 1986 and I have been sending them just that long. It has been some time since the boys have been able to express any surprise about their gifts, but I have always told them to be of good cheer. Those silver dollars, I have said with emotional certainty, are bound to be worth rather more one day. Well, I got to thinking about that promise recently and I thought I would look at the prices folks are getting for the coins nowadays to see whether I was right… [ more ]

via BloggingStocks

“Ten Thousand Cents” which has also been around the web quite a bit. For Ten Thousand Cents, 10,000 people were paid one cent to draw 1/10,000th of an image of a $100 bill.  This digital artwork creates a representation of a $100 bill. Using a custom drawing tool, thousands of individuals working in isolation from one another painted a tiny part of the bill without knowledge of the overall task. Workers were paid one cent each via Amazon’s Mechanical Turk distributed labor tool.

There is something quite powerful about the idea of thousands of people creating a work of art in tiny, unrelated chunks, unaware of what they are contributing to – the military and skunk works call it Compartmentalization for national security reasons… Quite apart from the end result, it provides an engaging commentary on our networked society both in terms of online connections and the global economy and sustainability.


The total labor cost to create the bill, the artwork being created, and the reproductions available for purchase (to charity) are all $100. The work is presented as a video piece with all 10,000 parts being drawn simultaneously. The project explores the circumstances we live in, a new and uncharted combination of digital labor markets, “crowdsourcing,” “virtual economies,” and digital reproduction.

Ten Thousand Cents from Ten Thousand Cents on Vimeo.

Ten Thousand Cents – Section close ups from Ten Thousand Cents on Vimeo.

WWF: Coins

Way cool idea to raise funds and increase awareness. Although something would need to be done to accommodate non-magnetic coins but a great concept.

WWF: Coins from CCW – Lab on Vimeo.

Real money as wallpaper and posterart… now you can update you Monopoly money with the real thing. The Zimbabwean newspaper posted billboards, flyers, and posters made from Zimbabwean dollars. From the Zimbabwean Newspaper’s Flickr stream:

Trillion dollar flyers and posters. A trillion dollar hand-out. To highlight the plight of Zimbabwe and the cause of the ‘Zimbabwean Newspaper’ we handed out trillions of dollars of worthless Zimbabwean money stamped with provocative messages and a call for support for the Zimbabwean newspaper, we also turned the money into giant posters, with trillion dollar tear-offs.

Zimbabwean Newspaper on Flickr

Bi-Metallic Coins

Core77 follows up their recent write-up on Production Methods with a quick overview on bi-metallic coins. If you’ve ever wondered how they make bimetallic coins, here’s the process. They start by punching a hole through a coin blank, or planchet. The core will be remelted for another batch, and the remaining part becomes the “ring,” or outer, planchet.


Next they take the “core” planchet, which is made from a different metal and sized to fit inside the ring, and they mill a groove all the way around the edge of it.


Why this method…So that when the press slams shut on the assembled parts, stamping a relief into it, the inside edge of the ring also deforms and spreads into the groove, locking it into place. Now that puppy’s not going anywhere, and you’ve got your purty two-tone coin.


You can get some cool-looking accidents. Below are photos of some defective coins where the hole in the ring blank was not perfectly centered, resulting in what you see here. Although these don’t quite meet the standards, coin collectors have a fondness for goofy oddities produced in the manufacturing process and there is quite a number of error collectors out there.


For more on coining, check out Core77’s Production Methods entry.

[photo credits: Flickr user photoshoparama, world coins, wbcc errors image library, wikipedia]

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